I'm a little bit of an adventurer at heart. Well, maybe that's obvious, not everyone moves millions of miles away to a new country alone. And that's certainly not the only adventure I've been on – I lived and worked in Italy for a time – I miss living in Europe for the ease of being able to pop over to a new country and culture in an hour (seriously my best friend and I "ran away" to Copenhagen once on 24 hours notice..)
I used to call my travel lust "getting itchy feet" – in fact since I was 14 years old – I've spent the longest continuous amount of time, living in L.A. Which is a massive testament to Southern California and the wonders that are on our doorstep. But I do love to travel – and from this point onwards, will be making it a serious part of Dedicated. So, welcome to, 'Dedicated Traveler.
The Pearl in Point Loma, San Diego hosted our stay while we were down in San Diego for Blog Her. The hotel itself is about 15 minutes drive from Downtown San Diego and is based in a mostly residential area.
The space is a mid century motel, converted to a trendy, mid century style, boutique hotel. The remodel is extremely tastefully done. I love the vintage aesthetic through the space, from the furniture to fixtures – everything fits the mid century modern look.
The hotel features a buzzing and busy (even for a Thursday night) poolside bar and restaurant, that looked so very inviting we didn't even want to leave for our scheduled party. So we didn't, we stayed and sampled the restaurants cocktails and dinner in our own poolside cabana. Our first cocktails were free – thanks to these cute shell drinks token left in our room – a really nice touch. Our second cocktails were also free thanks to their extremely competitive Foursquare check in special (man I love it when a special is genuinely rewarding!)
The food was really great – I had the Mac n Cheese – that was really delicious and made with a good strong cheese and penne pasta – homestyle. I also sampled their Pimms Cup cocktail – I already knew based on the menu that it wasn't made traditionally, so it didn't quite hit the mark – but the following champagne cocktail and subsequent bottle of champagne did. Oops.
The hotel also features a giant screen alongside the pool, where they screen movies in their weekly "Dive-In" programming. While we were there they were screening 'Shark Week' – not a particularly appetizing accompaniment to our meal – but a fun gimmick nonetheless.
The hotel room (we stayed in the Jewel room) fit with the aesthetic of the entire hotel – a huge and comfy platform bed was central – alongside a two seated sofa, a modern desk, an open closet and drawers, and an en suite bathroom with tub and shower.
The room decor continued, not just the mid century modern theme throughout the hotel, but the aquatic theme also, apparent in both colour and cute features such as our very own Beta fish – "Willy" and some "Kid Created Art".
The room itself was great, the bed was comfy and large. It featured a very handy iDock – meaning I could charge my iPhone, despite the fact I forgot my charger. It had free WiFi and a ton of towels. The one thing that was majorly lacking, was mirrors! The hotel featured one above sink mirror. And that's it – for a fashion girl – this was definitely an issue (and the website does state that the Jewel room does feature a full length mirror…!)
Overall our hotel experience was a good one – but that was mostly due to the hotel itself. The staff lacked in knowledge and weren't very helpful on more than one occasion (the restaurant/bar staff not included) a prime example of this was the parking situation.
On the night of arrival we parked in the hotel guest parking. We double checked at the front desk that we were ok to park there – but they explained that, due to construction at the front of the hotel, they were short on parking spaces, but that we were welcome to park on the side streets, or, if we were leaving before 7am, the Dr's office next door. We weren't getting up that early so we opted for the side streets and ended up parking two blocks away.
We were ok with this and just happy to be there and the receptionist assured us that if we came down in the morning we would be able to get a parking pass for the next night. So, the next morning, we did, and despite there being two people at the desk, we waited 20 minutes to receive our parking pass. There was a lot of confusion and my presence was barely acknowledged the whole time, but we got our parking pass.
That evening we arrived back around 11pm., to no available parking. I went inside to see if could resolve the situation – it had been a long day and we didn't especially want to park 2 blocks away when we were checking out the next morning. The receptionist explained that there was nothing she could do as sometimes restaurant guests ignore the signs and park in the hotel guest parking. I suggested that she ask around the restaurant and see if anyone was illegally parked. She said that they would lie to her. I asked if she could at least try. It took some convincing (including a final blow, out of sheer desperation "you realise I'm here to review the hotel right?!") but finally she told me she would ask her manager.
15 minutes later after going outside to talk to her manager (the whole time was spent talking as my colleague – waiting outside in the car, witnessed it) the manager came back in and started asking guests. Fortunately, the first guest he asked was illegally parked, and we were able to get our space.
It wasn't til the next morning that we discovered they wanted to charge us $10 for this privilege.
Unfortunately, as with most customer service issues, it did mar the trip a little. But despite this, based on the hotel, restaurant, bar and room – and it's sheer gorgeousness I would recommend a stay at The Pearl – they just really need to do some staff training!
Check out The Pearl SD here.